From the Editor | Why I Am Buying A Bigger Flag For Independence Day

posted on June 19, 2024
Frank Miniter

When I ponder Independence Day, I wonder when the America-loathing woke scourge of a political movement will decide to try to cancel the Fourth of July. Independence Day, after all, is forever linked with firearms, as it was won—and has since been kept—by armed, freedom-loving people.

And gunpowder doesn’t just make guns go bang; it is also what makes fireworks go off.

To put it plainly, the Fourth of July is a celebration of our nation’s war of independence, a war fought by people with cannons, muskets and rifles. Some woke academic, I suppose, could try to talk this away by noting that fireworks were invented well before the American Revolution, but that is beside the point. We call it Independence Day and then we light up the sky with bright explosions to celebrate the battles once fought to win our freedom, because this is all about an armed populace celebrating their liberty.

So okay, to put this in contemporary political context, we need to realize that many on the far-Left have targeted the American flag for cancellation. Grinding the heels of their Birkenstocks, Lucchese boots or whatever they put on their feet into the old red, white and blue will, if they are intellectually consistent at all, be expanded to include the loudest celebration of American freedom of all, Independence Day.

If we step back to look at mainstream American culture, it becomes clear that the Fourth of July simply can’t be celebrated properly without a sea of red, white and blue splashed along parade routes, over backyard barbeques and into the sky with fireworks displays. So, without question, the two critical material things needed for any Fourth of July celebration are gunpowder and Old Glory.

Each year, Americans buy about 150 million American flags so they can do things like hold them at parades or decorate their homes.

As for gunpowder, in 2022, American consumers (this is a separate statistic from display fireworks that are set off professionally) bought 436.4 million pounds of fireworks, mostly for Fourth of July celebrations, according to the American Pyrotechnics Association. This contributed about $2.3 billion to the economy.

Meanwhile, guns have always been an integral part of this holiday. Many of today’s celebrations include muskets and actual cannons. (To see a lively example, just go on YouTube and watch the Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular that combined the 1812 Overture with real cannon fire.) Also, many Americans do own cannons—sorry Biden, it is true—and some shoot them off on the Fourth.

The fireworks and flags, the small-town parades and big-city celebrations, all bring the Second Amendment to life on the promise of independence from tyranny. These displays are an appropriate use of gunpowder because no society today can truly by free without a right to keep and bear arms protected constitutionally from government infringement.

So then, on Independence Day, we celebrate this unique and critical freedom. It is not surprising then that despots, dictators and authoritarians of all types fear this individual freedom, as it negates their power over us.

Which is why it is time for an even bigger American flag on my front porch.


The Armed Citizen
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